When two Scottsburg officers were sent to a home near Scottsburg Elementary School on Thursday night, March 16, their mission was to investigate a 9-1-1 “hang-up.”
County dispatchers had earlier reported receiving a call through the 9-1-1 system where the caller apparently hung up. Patrolmen Troy Ford and Shawn Hurt were sent to the residence of Ronald L. Broadus, 44, at 86 North Hyland Street at 11:49 p.m.
When they pulled in the driveway of the small one-story home, they were met by a man getting out of a pickup truck parked in the drive. He was identified as Michael Lee Weston.
Weston offered to go get Broadus. Accompanied by Weston, the officers walked around the north side of the house to approach the front door. The door opened, Ptl. Ford stated in his probable cause affidavit, and a man walked out with “…a large butcher knife in his hand.”
The man, later identified as Brent J. Baker, dropped the knife when he saw Ptl. Ford and attempted to shut the door but was stopped by the officers.
Ptl. Ford said that, while he was retrieving the dropped knife just inside the door, he saw a syringe laying on a nearby table. He said he saw more syringes, a spoon covered in residue and several plastic baggies laying on a kitchen table ten feet away from the door. Broadus was in the kitchen along with two younger men, identified as Alfred Alex Riley and Joshua Riley.
Those three were taken outside, and Ptl. Ford told Broadus their purpose for being at his home, the 9-1-1 call. He said Broadus explained that the call must have been a “pocket dial.”
Broadus offered to take Ford through the house. The officer said he saw a used Narcan nasal spray container on a living room table. Asked who had overdosed, Broadus told him no one had.
Once Deputies James Shelton, Jac Sanders and James Ward arrived on the scene to assist, the five men were asked for cards proving they participated in the county’s needle exchange program and so could legally have syringes in their possession. None were produced.
Alex Riley allegedly told the officers that he would “…take the hit…” if illegal substances were found in the home. He further identified the coating on the spoon as heroin.
After Broadus signed a consent to search form, Ptl. Ford reported that two baggies with white residue and a digital scales were found in Broadus’ bedroom. Residue on another spoon in the kitchen also proved to be heroin.
Broadus was charged with three Level 6 felonies – unlawful possession of a syringe, possession of a narcotic drug and maintaining a common nuisance. He is being held in lieu of a higher-than-standard bond of $30,000 by corporate surety bond or $3,000 cash.
His friends are also in trouble. Baker, 28, Austin; Alex Riley, 23, Scottsburg; and Joshua Riley, 22, Seymour, are all charged with Level 6 felony unlawful possession of a syringe and possession of a narcotic drug and a misdemeanor charge of visiting a common nuisance.
In addition, petitions for detainer were filed against Baker and Alex Riley. Both are being held for 15 days without bond. Bail for each was set at $20,000 by surety bond or $2,000 cash. The initial jury trial date for Broadus, Joshua Riley and Baker is June 6. Because Alex Riley requested a speedy trial, his initial trial date is May 16. Joshua Riley’s bail is set at $15,000 by surety bond or $1,500 cash.
All three and Broadus were scheduled to revisit Circuit Court on Friday, March 24, to determine if they needed the services of public defenders.
Michael Weston, Scottsburg, is being held on a probation violation, according to the probable cause affidavit.